February 28, 2008

Special relationship could lead to special season

Before Billy Don Malone, a former Texas commit, took the field for the Abilene Christian University Wildcats, the general thought in Abilene was that one of the Church of Christ quarterbacks would end up at ACU after Kirby Freeman signed with Miami (FL), Graham Harrell signed with Texas Tech and Colt McCoy signed with Texas.

The odds seemed to be pretty good that one of them would go back to ACU if things didn't quite pan out at the original school. They could head to Abilene and be a star for the program for which their father's stared.

Some kids grow up in the limelight from the time they are born. Tiger Woods was one of those kids that made things happen as a teenager. When he won his first Master's in 1997, few even blinked because we had heard the hype and rumblings for so years. Some kids just grow up right in the middle of things. John Elway is another athlete that comes to mind because of his father. Other kids grow up just around the corner from Main St.

Two guys on the current Texas Longhorn football team that are from just off Main Street is the tandem of Jordan Shipley and Colt McCoy. These two could prove to be one heck of a duo over the next two years, assuming that Shipley receives his 6th year of eligibility. Some might say that if Texas is going to experience a large amount of team success this relationship on the football field has to mirror the relationship off the field.

Shipley and McCoy already have a bond that goes beyond the start of their Longhorn careers. Their fathers were roommates at ACU when they were playing football and these two have known each other since they were little kids. We're talking about two kids that hunt and fish together as well.

They are about to be joined again in a very tight and mutually beneficial relationship. 2008 is actually the year where Jordan Shipley should be able to play his best after knee injuries and he really should be back to the form that made him a high school All American.

McCoy is coming off of a sophomore campaign that was a good year but when compared to his freshman year, the 22 touchdowns against 18 interceptions is seen as the best place to make improvements.

These two young men that essentially grew up together, share the same faith, much of the same history and now much of their fate will be tied together on a field of green grass in the flashy new digs at DKR Texas Memorial Stadium.

Quan Cosby is surely going to be counted on to be a star on this team but his relationship with Colt McCoy is already established.

If any relationship is to be grown, enhanced and nourished, it is going to be the relationship between the two young men with West Texas ties.

More than 30 years since their fathers last played together, the last names and the sports are once again the same. Colt and Jordan are playing on a slightly bigger stage than Shotwell Stadium in Abilene. The colors are different and the stakes have been raised.

But really, it's two young men who are plying their trade, maximizing their gifts and playing to glorify a power greater than them.

For two kids who probably planned much of their life to be in West Texas right now, they have to be two kids living the dream.

A dream that has a shot to be really special.

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